FourFourTwo - - EDITOR'S LETTER - @Four­fourt­woed Hitesh Ratna Ed­i­tor

My first World Cup was Italia 90 and my abid­ing mem­o­ries of it are a hotch­potch of ran­dom­ness: Cameroon’s Ben­jamin Mass­ing try­ing to kill Clau­dio Canig­gia in the open­ing match (and los­ing a boot in the process); Ciao – the rub­bish tri­colour stick-fig­ure mas­cot; Pavarotti bel­low­ing beau­ti­fully over a mon­tage of some truly aw­ful matches. And of course there was Eng­land, with Gazza’s tears, David Platt’s vol­ley and Chris Wad­dle’s mul­let and miss. It was around this time that I bought my first Panini World Cup sticker book, in­spired by Eng­land’s run to the semi-fi­nals.

And that’s why we kick off the first of three World Cup is­sues with a load of iconic foot­ballers and stick­ers. As you will have no­ticed, this is­sue is bagged with the of­fi­cial Rus­sia 2018 Panini sticker al­bum, which must mean the build-up to the tour­na­ment is truly un­der­way. Any­one want to swap a Jake Liver­more for an Egyp­tian shiny?

As if that wasn’t enough, our cover feature this month re­flects on the play­ers who have come to de­fine our World Cup mem­o­ries, from Pele and Maradona to Can­navaro and Zi­dane. We also vis­ited Brazil leg­end Ron­aldo at his house in Madrid to dis­cuss com­ing back from the heartache of France 98 to score the win­ning goal in the fi­nal four years later. If you weren’t ex­cited for the World Cup, you will be now...

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